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Production company behind Broadchurch and Poldark takes over family home in Deal for ITV drama shoot

The producers behind hit TV shows Broadchurch, The Living and the Dead and Poldark have been filming a new ITV series in Deal this week, with one Kingsdown family letting out their home for the shoot.

Shaun and Helen Roper, both 55, and their daughters, Clare, 23 and Lucy, 19, of Wellington Parade, were approached by the makers of the new six-part series Liar in September.

Liar will star Joanne Froggatt, known from Downton Abbey and Dark Angel, and Ioan Gruffudd, of Hornblower, and is due to air next autumn.

The crew in Wellington Parade, Kingsdown
The crew in Wellington Parade, Kingsdown

The production team returned last Wednesday, spending three days preparing the Ropers’ house. They filmed there from Sunday until Tuesday.

Mr Roper, a physiotherapist working in Whitstable, said: “They just knocked on our door a couple of months ago.

“They said they were looking for an opportunity to film in this area and they thought our house would be ideal, being that it’s an ordinary four-bedroom type of house.”

Mr Roper and his wife, a midwife at QEQM Hospital in Margate, showed the producers around before signing a contract with them later.

Mr Roper said: “They then turned up when they said they would, last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and changed our living room.

“They redecorated and moved props in. They packed our stuff into a van.”

Actress Joanne Froggatt on Deal Pier
Actress Joanne Froggatt on Deal Pier

The family’s living-room walls were painted dark green, and a temporary feature wall, replacement furniture and plenty of children’s toys were installed. The curtains were also changed.

“It’s very much been made into a house with small children,” Mr Roper said. “It’s a bit like deja vu.

The cast were also using the family kitchen and a room at the top of the house.

The family were still able to sleep in their bedrooms and potter around as they wished.

Mr Roper said: “We can kick around if we want, but they take priority.”

Mr Roper said the family agreed to the proposal because it was a bit of a novelty.

He said: “It’s only for three days. They’ve all been very charming and pleasant people. It’s been a bit like a party.

“They’ve been very generous to the local community, paid for parking and wear and tear of the road. They’re happy to pay their way. We hope it will all be to the benefit of Kingsdown and Deal.”

The ITV team redecorated the Roper's family living room
The ITV team redecorated the Roper's family living room
The redecorated living room
The redecorated living room

Mrs Roper has even been filmed walking the family border terrier, Zoe, and could feature in the series.

The production team of around 60 were staying in The Royal Hotel, The Clarendon and Dunkerleys. Their unit base was at Walmer Castle gravel car park, where costumes, make-up and a canteen were stationed.

Filming has also taken place on Deal Pier and in Jasin’s Restaurant. Dover District Council closed the pier from 8am until 10am and between 3pm and 5pm on Tuesday.

The restaurant has been closed for four days including today (Thursday) to allow for filming.

Jasin’s owner, Jasin Kaplan said: “I am delighted ITV has chosen our restaurant to film in.

“I apologise to our loyal customers that we’re closed but I assure you it’s a cause well worth pursuing. We want to promote Jasin’s Restaurant, Deal Pier and Deal town.”

More filming will take place in Deal Beach Parlour tomorrow.

Owner of Jasin's Restuarant, Jasin Kaplan, with actor Ioan Gruffudd in Deal
Owner of Jasin's Restuarant, Jasin Kaplan, with actor Ioan Gruffudd in Deal

Eliza Mellor, who has worked on the The Living and the Dead, Poldark and Death Comes to Pemberley, is producing the series.

Ms Mellor told Kent Online: “Having visited Deal on several occasions over recent years, I thought it would be a good location for Liar.

“The director fell in love with the pier and the wonderful quality of light in Deal.

“We are filming here and in Kingsdown for six days, and Dover District Council have been extremely helpful in giving us access to the pier.

“We will be back in the new year for another block of filming.”

ITV has described Liar as a compelling emotional six-part thriller, created and written by Bafta and Golden Globe nominated producers and screenwriters Harry and Jack Williams of production company Two Brothers Pictures.

It is their first commission for ITV and is being produced in conjunction with SundanceTV in the US.

Their unit base is at Walmer Castle gravel car park, where costumes, make up and a canteen are stationed.
Their unit base is at Walmer Castle gravel car park, where costumes, make up and a canteen are stationed.

Liar tells the story of a night that changes the lives of Laura Newell (played by Joanne Froggatt) and Andrew Ellis (Ioan Gruffudd) forever.

Laura is a smart and dedicated teacher, not long out of a relationship and unsure about getting back on the dating scene.

Andrew is a renowned surgeon whose son is a pupil at Laura’s school.

An initial attraction leads to a date, but neither fully realises the far-reaching consequences that their meeting will have on each other or their families.

Truth and consequences go hand in hand in a tense and gripping thriller that examines both sides of a relationship and both sides of the truth.

Liar explores the devastating cost of deceit on both the couple and their friends and families, as secrets and lies are laid bare.

The series, made up of six episodes of 60 minutes, is due to air in September or October 2017.

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